Origen (Cont.)Origen Against Celsus. (Cont.)

Book IV. (C0nt.)


But since he has represented those whom he regards as worms, viz., the Christians, as saying that “God, having abandoned the heavenly regions, and despising this great earth, takes up His abode amongst us alone, and to us alone makes His announcements, and ceases not His messages and inquiries as to how we may become His associates for ever,” we have to answer that he attributes to us words which we never uttered, seeing we both read and know that God loves all existing things, and loathes85 nothing which He has made, for He would not have created anything in hatred. We have, moreover, read the declaration: “And Thou sparest all things, because they are Thine, O lover of souls. For Thine incorruptible Spirit is in all. And therefore those also who have fallen away for a little time Thou rebukest, and admonishest, reminding them of their sins.” (cf. Wisdom of Solomon 11:26) How can we assert that “God, leaving the regions of heaven, and the whole world, and despising this great earth, takes up His abode amongst us only,” when we have found that all thoughtful persons must say in their prayers, that “the earth is full of the mercy of the Lord,” (Psa_33:5) and that “the mercy of the Lord is upon all flesh;” (Ecclesiasticus 18:13.) and that God, being good, “maketh His sun to arise upon the evil and the good, and sendeth His rain upon the just and the unjust;” (cf. Mat_5:45) and that He encourages us to a similar course of action, in order that we may become His sons, and teaches us to extend the benefits which we enjoy, so far as in our power, to all men? For He Himself is said to be the Saviour of all men, especially of them that believe; (cf. 1Ti_4:10) and His Christ to be the “propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.” (cf. 1Jo_2:2) And this, then, is our answer to the allegations of Celsus. Certain other statements, in keeping with the character of the Jews, might be made by some of that nation, but certainly not by the Christians, who have been taught that “God commendeth His love towards us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us;” (cf. Rom_5:8) and although “scarcely for a righteous man will one die, yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die.” (cf. Rom_5:7) But now is Jesus declared to have come for the sake of sinners in all parts of the world (that they may forsake their sin, and entrust themselves to God), being called also, agreeably to an ancient custom of these Scriptures, the “Christ of God.”


Chap. XXIX.

But Celsus perhaps has misunderstood certain of those whom he has termed “worms,” when they affirm that “God exists, and that we are next to Him.” And he acts like those who would find fault with an entire sect of philosophers, on account of certain words uttered by some rash youth who, after a three days’ attendance upon the lectures of a philosopher, should exalt himself above other people as inferior to himself, and devoid of philosophy. For we know that there are many creatures more honourable86 than man; and we have read that “God standeth in the congregation of gods,” (cf. Psa_82:1) but of gods who are not worshipped by the nations, “for all the gods of the nations are idols.”87 We have read also, that “God, standing in the congregation of the gods, judgeth among the gods.” (cf. Psa_82:1) We know, moreover, that “though there be that are called gods, whether in heaven or in earth (as there be gods many and lords many), but to us there is one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in Him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by Him.” (1Co_8:5, 1Co_8:6) And we know that in this way the angels are superior to men; so that men, when made perfect, become like the angels. “For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but the righteous are as the angels in heaven,” (cf. Mat_22:30) and also become “equal to the angels.” (cf. Luk_20:36) We know, too, that in the arrangement of the universe there are certain beings termed “thrones,” and others “dominions,” and others “powers,” and others “principalities;” and we see that we men, who are far inferior to these, may entertain the hope that by a virtuous life, and by acting in all things agreeably to reason, we may rise to a likeness with all these. And, lastly, because “it doth not yet appear what we shall be; but we know that when He shall appear, we shall be like God, and shall see Him as He is.” (cf. 1Jo_3:2) And if any one were to maintain what is asserted by some (either by those who possess intelligence or who do not, but have misconceived sound reason), that “God exists, and we are next to Him,” I would interpret the word “we,” by using in its stead, “We who act according to reason,” or rather, “We virtuous, who act according to reason.”88 For, in our opinion, the same virtue belongs to all the blessed, so that the virtue of man and of God is identical.89 And therefore we are taught to become “perfect,” as our Father in heaven is perfect. (cf. Mat_5:48) No good and virtuous man, then, is a “worm rolling in filth,” nor is a pious man an “ant,” nor a righteous man a “frog;” nor could one whose soul is enlightened with the bright light of truth be reasonably likened to a “bird of the night.”


Chap. XXX.

It appears to me that Celsus has also misunderstood this statement, “Let Us make man in Our image and likeness;” (cf. Gen_1:26) and has therefore represented the “worms” as saying that, being created by God, we altogether resemble Him. If, however, he had known the difference between man being created “in the image of God” and “after His likeness,” and that God is recorded to have said, “Let Us make man after Our image and likeness,” but that He made man “after the image” of God, but not then also “after His likeness,” (cf. Gen_1:27) he would not have represented us as saying that “we are altogether like Him.” Moreover, we do not assert that the stars are subject to us; since the resurrection which is called the “resurrection of the just,” and which is understood by wise men, is compared to the sun, and moon, and stars, by him who said, “There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars; for one star differeth from another star in glory. So also is the resurrection of the dead.” (cf. 1Co_15:41, 1Co_15:42) Daniel also prophesied long ago regarding these things. (cf. Daniel 13:3) Celsus says further, that we assert that “all things have been arranged so as to be subject to us,” having perhaps heard some of the intelligent among us speaking to that effect, and perhaps also not understanding the saying, that “he who is the greatest amongst us is the servant of all.” (cf. Mat_20:27) And if the Greeks say, “Then sun and moon are the slaves of mortal men,”90 they express approval of the statement, and give an explanation of its meaning; but since such a statement is either not made at all by us, or is expressed in a different way, Celsus here too falsely accuses us. Moreover, we who, according to Celsus, are “worms,” are represented by him as saying that, “seeing some among us are guilty of sin, God will come to us, or will send His own Son, that He may consume the wicked, and that we other frogs may enjoy eternal life with Him.” Observe how this venerable philosopher, like a low buffoon,91 turns into ridicule and mockery, and a subject of laughter, the announcement of a divine judgment, and of the punishment of the wicked, and of the reward of the righteous; and subjoins to all this the remark, that “such statements would be more endurable if made by worms and flogs than by Christians and Jews who quarrel with one another!” We shall not, however, imitate his example, nor say similar things regarding those philosophers who profess to know the nature of all things, and who discuss with each other the manner in which all things were created, and how the heaven and earth originated, and all things in them; and how the souls (of men), being either unbegotten, and not created by God, are yet governed by Him, and pass from one body to another;92 or being formed at the same time with the body, exist for ever or pass away. For instead of treating with respect and accepting the intention of those who have devoted themselves to the investigation of the truth, one might mockingly and revilingly say that such men were “worms,” who did not measure themselves by their comer of their dung-heap in human life, and who accordingly gave forth their opinions on matters of such importance as if they understood them, and who strenuously assert that they have obtained a view of those things which cannot be seen without a higher inspiration and a diviner power. “For no man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him: even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.” (cf. 1Co_2:11) We are not, however, mad, nor do we compare such human wisdom (I use the word “wisdom” in the common acceptation), which busies itself not about the affairs of the multitude, but in the investigation of truth, to the wrigglings of worms or any other such creatures; but in the spirit of truth, we testify of certain Greek philosophers that they knew God, seeing “He manifested Himself to them,” (cf. Rom_1:19) although “they glorified Him not as God, neither were thankful, but became vain in their imaginations; and professing themselves to be wise, they became foolish, and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and four-footed beasts, and creeping things.” (Rom_1:21-23)


Chap. XXXI.

After this, wishing to prove that there is no difference between Jews and Christians, and those animals previously enumerated by him, he asserts that the Jews were “fugitives from Egypt, who never performed anything worthy of note, and never were held in any reputation or account.”93 Now, on the point of their not being fugitives, nor Egyptians, but Hebrews who settled in Egypt, we have spoken in the preceding pages. But if he thinks his statement, that “they were never held in any reputation or account,” to be proved, because no remarkable event in their history is found recorded by the Greeks, we would answer, that if one will examine their polity from its first beginning, and the arrangement of their laws, he will find that they were men who represented upon earth the shadow of a heavenly life, and that amongst them God is recognised as nothing else, save He who is over all things, and that amongst them no maker of images was permitted to enjoy the rights of citizenship.94 For neither painter nor image-maker existed in their state, the law expelling all such from it; that there might be no pretext for the construction of images, – an art which attracts the attention of foolish men, and which drags down the eyes of the soul from God to earth.95 There was, accordingly, amongst them a law to the following effect: “Do not transgress the law, and make to yourselves a graven image, any likeness of male or female; either a likeness of any one of the creatures that are upon the earth, or a likeness of any winged fowl that flieth under the heaven, or a likeness of any creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth, or a likeness of any of the fishes which are in the waters under the earth.” (cf. Deu_4:16-18) The law, indeed, wished them to have regard to the truth of each individual thing, and not to form representations of things contrary to reality, feigning the appearance merely of what was really male or really female, or the nature of animals, or of birds, or of creeping things, or of fishes. Venerable, too, and grand was this prohibition of theirs: “Lift not up thine eyes unto heaven, lest, when thou seest the sun, and the moon, and the stars, and all the host of heaven, thou shouldst be led astray to worship them, and serve them.” (cf. Deu_4:19) And what a regime96 was that under which the whole nation was placed, and which rendered it impossible for any effeminate person to appear in public;97 and worthy of admiration, too, was the arrangement by which harlots were removed out of the state, those incentives to the passions of the youth! Their courts of justice also were composed of men of the strictest integrity, who, after having for a lengthened period set the example of an unstained life, were entrusted with the duty of presiding over the tribunals, and who, on account of the superhuman purity of their character,98 were said to be gods, in conformity with an ancient Jewish usage of speech. Here was the spectacle of a whole nation devoted to philosophy; and in order that there might be leisure to listen to their sacred laws, the days termed “Sabbath,” and the other festivals which existed among them, were instituted. And why need I speak of the orders of their priests and sacrifices, which contain innumerable indications (of deeper truths) to those who wish to ascertain the signification of things?


Chap. XXXII.

But since nothing belonging to human nature is permanent, this polity also must gradually be corrupted and changed. And Providence, having remodelled their venerable system where it needed to be changed, so as to adapt it to men of all countries, gave to believers of all nations, in place of the Jews, the venerable religion of Jesus, who, being adorned not only with understanding, but also with a share of divinity,99 and having overthrown the doctrine regarding earthly demons, who delight in frankincense, and blood, and in the exhalations of sacrificial odours, and who, like the fabled Titans or Giants, drag down men from thoughts of God; and having Himself disregarded their plots, directed chiefly against the better class of men, enacted laws which ensure happiness to those who live according to them, and who do not flatter the demons by means of sacrifices, but altogether despise them, through help of the word of God, which aids those who look upwards to Him. And as it was the will of God that the doctrine of Jesus should prevail amongst men, the demons could effect nothing, although straining every nerve100 to accomplish the destruction of Christians; for they stirred up both princes, and senates, and rulers in every place, – nay, even nations themselves, who did not perceive the irrational and wicked procedure of the demons, – against the word, and those who believed in it; yet, notwithstanding, the word of God, which is more powerful than all other things, even when meeting with opposition, deriving from the opposition, as it were, a means of increase, advanced onwards, and won many souls, such being the will of God. And we have offered these remarks by way of a necessary digression. For we wished to answer the assertion of Celsus concerning the Jews, that they were “fugitives from Egypt, and that these men, beloved by God, never accomplished anything worthy of note.” And further, in answer to the statement that “they were never held in any reputation or account,” we say, that living apart as a “chosen nation and a royal priesthood,” and shunning intercourse with the many nations around them, in order that their morals might escape corruption, they enjoyed the protection of the divine power, neither coveting like the most of mankind the acquisition of other kingdoms, nor yet being abandoned so as to become, on account of their smallness, an easy object of attack to others, and thus be altogether destroyed; and this lasted so long as they were worthy of the divine protection. But when it became necessary for them, as a nation wholly given to sin, to be brought back by their sufferings to their God, they were abandoned (by Him), sometimes for a longer, sometimes for a shorter period, until in the time of the Romans, having committed the greatest of sins in putting Jesus to death, they were completely deserted.



Immediately after this, Celsus, assailing the contents of the first book of Moses, which is entitled “Genesis,” asserts that “the Jews accordingly endeavoured to derive their origin from the first race of jugglers and deceivers,101 appealing to the testimony of dark and ambiguous words, whose meaning was veiled in obscurity, and which they misinterpreted102 to the unlearned and ignorant, and that, too, when such a point had never been called in question during the long preceding period.” Now Celsus appears to me in these words to have expressed very obscurely the meaning which he intended to convey. It is probable, indeed, that his obscurity on this subject is intentional, inasmuch as he saw the strength of the argument which establishes the descent of the Jews from their ancestors; while again, on the other hand, he wished not to appear ignorant that the question regarding the Jews and their descent was one that could not be lightly disposed of. It is certain, however, that the Jews trace their genealogy back to the three fathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. And the names of these individuals possess such efficacy, when united with the name of God, that not only do those belonging to the nation employ in their prayers to God, and in the exorcising of demons, the words, “God of Abraham,103 and God of Isaac, and God of Jacob,” but so also do almost all those who occupy themselves with incantations and magical rites. For there is found in treatises on magic in many countries such an invocation of God, and assumption of the divine name, as implies a familiar use of it by these men in their dealings with demons. These facts, then – adduced by Jews and Christians to prove the sacred character of Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, the fathers of the Jewish race – appear to me not to have been altogether unknown to Celsus, but not to have been distinctly set forth by him, because he was unable to answer the argument which might be founded on them.


Chap. XXXIV.

For we inquire of all those who employ such invocations of God, saying: Tell us, friends, who was Abraham, and what sort of person was Isaac, and what power did Jacob possess, that the appellation “God,” when joined with their name, could effect such wonders? And from whom have you learned, or can you learn, the facts relating to these individuals? And who has occupied himself with writing a history about them, either directly magnifying these men by ascribing to them mysterious powers, or hinting obscurely at their possession of certain great and marvellous qualities, patent to those who are qualified to see them?104 And when, in answer to our inquiry, no one can show from what history – whether Greek or Barbarian – or, if not a history, yet at least from what mystical narrative,105 the accounts of these men are derived, we shall bring forward the book entitled “Genesis,” which contains the acts of these men, and the divine oracles addressed to them, and will say, Does not the use by you of the names of these three ancestors of the race, establishing in the clearest manner that effects not to be lightly regarded are produced by the invocation of them, evidence the divinity of the men?106 And yet we know them from no other source than the sacred books of the Jews! Moreover, the phrases, “the God of Israel,” and “the God of the Hebrews,” and “the God who drowned in the Red Sea the king of Egypt and the Egyptians,” are formulae107 frequently employed against demons and certain wicked powers. And we learn the history of the names and their interpretation from those Hebrews, who in their national literature and national tongue dwell with pride upon these things, and explain their meaning. How, then, should the Jews attempt to derive their origin from the first race of those whom Celsus supposed to be jugglers and deceivers, and shamelessly endeavour to trace themselves and their beginning back to these? – whose names, being Hebrew, are an evidence to the Hebrews, who have their sacred books written in the Hebrew language and letters, that their nation is akin to these men. For up to the present time, the Jewish names belonging to the Hebrew language were either taken from their writings, or generally from words the meaning of which was made known by the Hebrew language.


Chap. XXXV.

And let any one who peruses the treatise of Celsus observe whether it does not convey some such insinuation as the above, when he says: “And they attempted to derive their origin from the first race of jugglers and deceivers, appealing to the testimony of dark and ambiguous words, whose meaning was veiled in obscurity.” For these names are indeed obscure, and not within the comprehension and knowledge of many, though not in our opinion of doubtful meaning, even although assumed by those who are aliens to our religion; but as, according to Celsus, they do not108 convey any ambiguity, I am at a loss to know why he has rejected them. And yet, if he had wished honestly to overturn the genealogy which he deemed the Jews to have so shamelessly arrogated, in boasting of Abraham and his descendants (as their progenitors), he ought to have quoted all the passages bearing on the subject; and, in the first place, to have advocated his cause with such arguments as he thought likely to be convincing, and in the next to have bravely109 refuted, by means of what appeared to him to be the true meaning, and by arguments in its favour, the errors existing on the subject. But neither Celsus nor any one else will be able, by their discussions regarding the nature of names employed for miraculous purposes, to lay down the correct doctrine regarding them, and to demonstrate that those men were to be lightly esteemed whose names merely, not among their countrymen alone, but also amongst foreigners, could accomplish (such results). He ought to have shown, moreover, how we, in misinterpreting110 the passages in which these names are found, deceive our hearers, as he imagines, while he himself, who boasts that he is not ignorant or unintelligent, gives the true interpretation of them. And he hazarded the assertion,111 in speaking of those names, from which the Jews deduce their genealogies, that “never, during the long antecedent period, has there been any dispute about these names, but that at the present time the Jews dispute about them with certain others,” whom he does not mention. Now, let him who chooses show who these are that dispute with the Jews, and who adduce even probable arguments to show that Jews and Christians do not decide correctly on the points relating to these names, but that there are others who have discussed these questions with the greatest learning and accuracy. But we are well assured that none can establish anything of the sort, it being manifest that these names are derived from the Hebrew language, which is found only among the Jews.


Chap. XXXVI.

Celsus in the next place, producing from history other than that of the divine record, those passages which bear upon the claims to great antiquity put forth by many nations, as the Athenians, and Egyptians, and Arcadians, and Phrygians, who assert that certain individuals have existed among them who sprang from the earth, and who each adduce proofs of these assertions, says: “The Jews, then, leading a grovelling life112 in some comer of Palestine, and being a wholly uneducated people, who had not heard that these matters had been committed to verse long ago by Hesiod and innumerable other inspired men, wove together some most incredible and insipid stories,113 viz., that a certain man was formed by the hands of God, and had breathed into him the breath of life, and that a woman was taken from his side, and that God issued certain commands, and that a serpent opposed these, and gained a victory over the commandments of God; thus relating certain old wives’ fables, and most impiously representing God as weak at the very beginning (of things), and unable to convince even a single human being whom He Himself had formed.” By these instances, indeed, this deeply read and learned Celsus, who accuses Jews and Christians of ignorance and want of instruction, clearly evinces the accuracy of his knowledge of the chronology of the respective historians, whether Greek or Barbarian, since he imagines that Hesiod and the “innumerable” others, whom he styles “inspired” men, are older than Moses and his writings – that very Moses who is shown to be much older than the time of the Trojan war! It is not the Jews, then, who have composed incredible and insipid stories regarding the birth of man from the earth, but these “inspired” men of Celsus, Hesiod and his other “innumerable” companions, who, having neither learned nor heard of the far older and most venerable accounts existing in Palestine, have written such histories as their Theogonies, attributing, so far as in their power, “generation” to their deities, and innumerable other absurdities. And these are the writers whom Plato expels from his “State” as being corrupters of the youth,114 – Homer, viz., and those who have composed poems of a similar description! Now it is evident that Plato did not regard as “inspired” those men who had left behind them such works. But perhaps it was from a desire to cast reproach upon us, that this Epicurean Celsus, who is better able to judge than Plato (if it be the same Celsus who composed two other books against the Christians), called those individuals “inspired” whom he did not in reality regard as such.



He charges us, moreover, with introducing “a man formed by the hands of God,” although the book of Genesis has made no mention of the “hands” of God, either when relating the creation or the “fashioning”115 of the man; while it is Job and David who have used the expression, “Thy hands have made me and fashioned me;” (cf. Job_10:8 and Psa_119:73) with reference to which it would need a lengthened discourse to point out the sense in which these words were understood by those who used them, both as regards the difference between “making” and “fashioning,” and also the “hands” of God. For those who do not understand these and similar expressions in the sacred Scriptures, imagine that we attribute to the God who is over all things a form116 such as that of man; and according to their conceptions, it follows that we consider the body of God to be furnished with wings, since the Scriptures, literally understood, attribute such appendages to God. The subject before us, however, does not require us to interpret these expressions; for, in our explanatory remarks upon the book of Genesis, these matters have been made, to the best of our ability, a special subject of investigation. Observe next the malignity117 of Celsus in what follows. For the Scripture, speaking of the “fashioning”118 of the man, says, “And breathed into his face the breath of life, and the man became a living soul.”119 Whereon Celsus, wishing maliciously to ridicule the “inbreathing into his face of the breath of life,” and not understanding the sense in which the expression was employed, states that “they composed a story that a man was fashioned by the hands of God, and was inflated by breath blown into him,”120 in order that, taking the word” inflated” to be used in a similar way to the inflation of skins, he might ridicule the statement, “He breathed into his face the breath of life,” – terms which are used figuratively, and require to be explained in order to show that God communicated to man of His incorruptible Spirit; as it is said, “For Thine incorruptible Spirit is in all things.” (Wisdom of Solomon 12:1.)



In the next place, as it is his object to slander our Scriptures, he ridicules the following statement: “And God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof. And the rib, which He had taken from the man, made He a woman,” (cf. Gen_2:21, Gen_2:22) and so on; without quoting the words, which would give the hearer the impression that they are spoken with a figurative meaning. He would not even have it appear that the words were used allegorically, although he says afterwards, that “the more modest among Jews and Christians are ashamed of these things, and endeavour to give them somehow an allegorical signification.” Now we might say to him, Are the statements of your “inspired” Hesiod, which he makes regarding the woman in the form of a myth, to be explained allegorically, in the sense that she was given by Jove to men as an evil thing, and as a retribution for the theft of “the fire;”121 while that regarding the woman who was taken from the side of the man (after he had been buried in deep slumber), and was formed by God, appears to you to be related without any rational meaning and secret signification?122 But is it not uncandid, not to ridicule the former as myths, but to admire them as philosophical ideas in a mythical dress, and to treat with contempt123 the latter, as offending the understanding, and to declare that they are of no account? For if, because of the mere phraseology, we are to find fault with what is intended to have a secret meaning, see whether the following lines of Hesiod, a man, as you say, “inspired,” are not better fitted to excite laughter: – 

“‘Son of Iapetus!’ with wrathful heart

Spake the cloud-gatherer: ‘Oh, unmatched in art!

Exultest thou in this the flame retrieved,

And dost thou triumph in the god deceived?

But thou, with the posterity of man,

Shalt rue the fraud whence mightier ills began;

I will send evil for thy stealthy fire,

While all embrace it, and their bane desire.’

The sire, who rules the earth, and sways the pole,

Had said, and laughter fill’d his secret soul.

He bade the artist-god his best obey,

And mould with tempering waters ductile clay:

Infuse, as breathing life and form began,

The supple vigour, and the voice of man:

Her aspect fair as goddesses above,

A virgin’s likeness, with the brows of love.

He bade Minerva teach the skill that dyes

The web with colours, as the shuttle flies;

He called the magic of Love’s Queen to shed

A nameless grace around her courteous head;

Instil the wish that longs with restless aim,

And cares of dress that feed upon the frame:

Bade Hermes last implant the craft refined

Of artful manners, and a shameless mind.

He said; their king th’ inferior powers obeyed:

The fictile likeness of a bashful maid

Rose from the temper’d earth, by Jove’s behest,

Under the forming god; the zone and vest

Were clasp’d and folded by Minerva’s hand:

The heaven-born graces, and persuasion bland

Deck’d her round limbs with chains of gold: the hours

Of loose locks twined her temples with spring flowers.

The whole attire Minerva’s curious care

Form’d to her shape, and fitted to her air.

But in her breast the herald from above,

Full of the counsels of deep thundering Jove,

Wrought artful manners, wrought perfidious lies,

And speech that thrills the blood, and lulls the wise.

Her did th’ interpreter of gods proclaim,

And named the woman with Pandora’s name;

Since all the gods conferr’d their gifts, to charm,

For man’s inventive race, this beauteous harm.”124

Moreover, what is said also about the casket is fitted of itself to excite laughter; for example: – 

“Whilome on earth the sons of men abode

From ills apart, and labour’s irksome load,

And sore diseases, bringing age to man;

Now the sad life of mortals is a span.

The woman’s hands a mighty casket bear;

She lifts the lid; she scatters griefs in air:

Alone, beneath the vessel’s rims detained,

Hope still within th’ unbroken cell remained,

Nor fled abroad; so will’d cloud-gatherer Jove:

The woman’s hand had dropp’d the lid above.”125

Now, to him who would give to these lines a grave allegorical meaning (whether any such meaning be contained in them or not), we would say: Are the Greeks alone at liberty to convey a philosophic meaning in a secret covering? or perhaps also the Egyptians, and those of the Barbarians who pride themselves upon their mysteries and the truth (which is concealed within them); while the Jews alone, with their lawgiver and historians, appear to you the most unintelligent of men? And is this the only nation which has not received a share of divine power, and which yet was so grandly instructed how to rise upwards to the uncreated nature of God, and to gaze on Him alone, and to expect from Him alone (the fulfilment of) their hopes? 


Chap. XXXIX.

But as Celsus makes a jest also of the serpent, as counteracting the injunctions given by God to the man, taking the narrative to be an old wife’s fable,126 and has purposely neither mentioned the paradise127 of God, nor stated that God is said to have planted it in Eden towards the east, and that there afterwards sprang up from the earth every tree that was beautiful to the sight, and good for food, and the tree of life in the midst of the paradise, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, and the other statements which follow, which might of themselves lead a candid reader to see that all these things had not inappropriately an allegorical meaning, let us contrast with this the words of Socrates regarding Eros in the Symposium of Plato, and which are put in the mouth of Socrates as being more appropriate than what was said regarding him by all the others at the Symposium. The words of Plato are as follow: “When Aphrodite was born, the gods held a banquet, and there was present, along with the others, Porus the son of Metis. And after they had dined, Penia128 came to beg for something (seeing there was an entertainment), and she stood at the gate. Porus meantime, having become intoxicated with the nectar (for there was then no wine), went into the garden of Zeus, and, being heavy with liquor, lay down to sleep. Penia accordingly formed a secret plot, with a view of freeing herself from her condition of poverty,129 to get a child by Porus, and accordingly lay down beside him, and became pregnant with Eros. And on this account Eros has become the follower and attendant of Aphrodite, having been begotten on her birthday feast,130 and being at the same time by nature a lover of the beautiful, because Aphrodite too is beautiful. Seeing, then, that Eros is the son of Porus and Penia, the following is his condition.131 In the first place, he is always poor, and far from being delicate and beautiful, as most persons imagine; but is withered, and sunburnt,132 and unshod, and without a home, sleeping always upon the ground, and without a covering; lying in the open air beside gates, and on public roads; possessing the nature of his mother, and dwelling continually with indigence.133 But, on the other hand, in conformity with the character of his father, he is given to plotting against the beautiful and the good, being courageous, and hasty, and vehement;134 a keen135 hunter, perpetually devising contrivances; both much given to forethought, and also fertile in resources;136 acting like a philosopher throughout the whole of his life; a terrible137 sorcerer, and dealer in drugs, and a sophist as well; neither immortal by nature nor yet mortal, but on the same day, at one time he flourishes and lives when he has plenty, and again at another time dies, and once more is recalled to life through possessing the nature of his father. But the supplies furnished to him are always gradually disappearing, so that he is never at any time in want, nor yet rich; and, on the other hand, he occupies an intermediate position between wisdom and ignorance.”138 Now, if those who read these words were to imitate the malignity of Celsus – which be it far from Christians to do! – they would ridicule the myth, and would turn this great Plato into a subject of jest; but if, on investigating in a philosophic spirit what is conveyed in the dress of a myth, they should be able to discover the meaning of Plato, (they will admire)139 the manner in which he was able to conceal, on account of the multitude, in the form of this myth, the great ideas which presented themselves to him, and to speak in a befitting manner to those who know how to ascertain from the myths the true meaning of him who wove them together. Now I have brought forward this myth occurring in the writings of Plato, because of the mention in it of the garden of Zeus, which appears to bear some resemblance to the paradise of God, and of the comparison between Penia and the serpent, and the plot against Porus by Penia, which may be compared with the plot of the serpent against the man. It is not very clear, indeed, whether Plato fell in with these stories by chance, or whether, as some think, meeting during his visit to Egypt with certain individuals who philosophized on the Jewish mysteries, and learning some things from them, he may have preserved a few of their ideas, and thrown others aside, being careful not to offend the Greeks by a complete adoption of all the points of the philosophy of the Jews, who were in bad repute with the multitude, on account of the foreign character of their laws and their peculiar polity. The present, however, is not the proper time for explaining either the myth of Plato, or the story of the serpent and the paradise of God, and all that is related to have taken place in it, as in our exposition of the book of Genesis we have especially occupied ourselves as we best could with these matters.


Chap. XL.

But as he asserts that “the Mosaic narrative most impiously represents God as in a state of weakness from the very commencement (of things), and as unable to gain over (to obedience) even one single man whom He Himself had formed,” we say in answer that the objection140 is much the same as if one were to find fault with the existence of evil, which God has not been able to prevent even in the case of a single individual, so that one man might be found from the very beginning of things who was born into the world untainted by sin. For as those whose business it is to defend the doctrine of providence do so by means of arguments which are not to be despised,141 so also the subjects of Adam and his son will be philosophically dealt with by those who are aware that in the Hebrew language Adam signifies man; and that in those parts of the narrative which appear to refer to Adam as an individual, Moses is discoursing upon the nature of man in general.142 For “in Adam” (as the Scripture (cf. 1Co_15:22 with Rom_5:14) says) “all die,” and were condemned in the likeness of Adam’s transgression, the word of God asserting this not so much of one particular individual as of the whole human race. For in the connected series of statements which appears to apply as to one particular individual, the curse pronounced upon Adam is regarded as common to all (the members of the race), and what was spoken with reference to the woman is spoken of every woman without exception.143 And the expulsion of the man and woman from paradise, and their being clothed with tunics of skins (which God, because of the transgression of men, made for those who had sinned), contain a certain secret and mystical doctrine (far transcending that of Plato) of the souls losing its wings,144 and being borne downwards to earth, until it can lay hold of some stable resting-place.


Chap. XLI.

After this he continues as follows: “They speak, in the next place, of a deluge, and of a monstrous145 ark, having within it all things, and of a dove and a crow146 as messengers, falsifying and recklessly altering147 the story of Deucalion; not expecting, I suppose, that these things would come to light, but imagining that they were inventing stories merely for young children.” Now in these remarks observe the hostility – so unbecoming a philosopher – displayed by this man towards this very ancient Jewish narrative. For, not being able to say anything against the history of the deluge, and not perceiving what he might have urged against the ark and its dimensions, – viz., that, according to the general opinion, which accepted the statements that it was three hundred cubits in length, and fifty in breadth, and thirty in height, it was impossible to maintain that it contained (all) the animals that were upon the earth, fourteen specimens of every clean and four of every unclean beast, – he merely termed it “monstrous, containing all things within it.” Now wherein was its “monstrous” character, seeing it is related to have been a hundred years in building, and to have had the three hundred cubits of its length and the fifty of its breadth contracted, until the thirty cubits of its height terminated in a top one cubit long and one cubit broad? Why should we not rather admire a structure which resembled an extensive city, if its measurements be taken to mean what they are capable of meaning,148 so that it was nine myriads of cubits long in the base, and two thousand five hundred in breadth?149 And why should we not admire the design evinced in having it so compactly built, and rendered capable of sustaining a tempest which caused a deluge? For it was not daubed with pitch, or any material of that kind, but was securely coated with bitumen. And is it not a subject of admiration, that by the providential arrangement of God, the elements of all the races were brought into it, that the earth might receive again the seeds of all living things, while God made use of a most righteous man to be the progenitor of those who were to be born after the deluge?


Chap. XLII.

In order to show that he had read the book of Genesis, Celsus rejects the story of the dove, although unable to adduce any reason which might prove it to be a fiction. In the next place, as his habit is, in order to put the narrative in a more ridiculous light, he converts the “raven” into a “crow,” and imagines that Moses so wrote, having recklessly altered the accounts related of the Grecian Deucalion; unless perhaps he regards the narrative as not having proceeded from Moses, but from several individuals, as appears from his employing the plural number in the expressions, “falsifying and recklessly altering the story of Deucalion,”150 as well as from the words, “For they did not expect, I suppose, that these things would come to light.” But how should they, who gave their Scriptures to the whole nation, not expect that they would come to light, and who predicted, moreover, that this religion should be proclaimed to all nations? Jesus declared, “The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof;” (cf. Mat_21:43) and in uttering these words to the Jews, what other meaning did He intend to convey than this, viz., that He Himself should, through his divine power, bring forth into light the whole of the Jewish Scriptures, which contain the mysteries of the kingdom of God? If, then, they peruse the Theogonies of the Greeks, and the stories about the twelve gods, they impart to them an air of dignity, by investing them with an allegorical signification; but when they wish to throw contempt upon our biblical narratives, they assert that they are fables, clumsily invented for infant children!


Chap. XLIII.

“Altogether absurd, and out of season,”151 he continues, “is the (account of the) begetting of children,” where, although he has mentioned no names, it is evident that he is referring to the history of Abraham and Sarah. Cavilling also at the “conspiracies of the brothers,” he allies either to the story of Cain plotting against Abel, (cf. Gen_4:8) or, in addition, to that of Esau against Jacob; (cf. Gen_27:41) and (speaking) of “a father’s sorrow,” he probably refers to that of Isaac on account of the absence of Jacob, and perhaps also to that of Jacob because of Joseph having been sold into Egypt. And when relating the “crafty procedure of mothers,” I suppose he means the conduct of Rebecca, who contrived that the blessing of Isaac should descend, not upon Esau, but upon Jacob. Now if we assert that in all these cases God interposed in a very marked degree,152 what absurdity do we commit, seeing we are persuaded that He never withdraws His providence153 from those who devote themselves to Him in an honourable and vigorous154 life? He ridicules, moreover, the acquisition of property made by Jacob while living with Laban, not understanding to what these words refer: “And those which had no spots were Laban’s, and those which were spotted were Jacob’s;”155 and he says that “God presented his sons with asses, and sheep, and camels,” (cf. Gen_30:43) and did not see that “all these things happened unto them for ensamples, and were written for our sake, upon whom the ends of the world are come.” (cf. 1Co_10:11) The varying customs (prevailing among the different nations) becoming famous,156 are regulated by the word of God, being given as a possession to him who is figuratively termed Jacob. For those who become converts to Christ from among the heathen, are indicated by the history of Laban and Jacob.


Chap. XLIV.

And erring widely from the meaning of Scripture, he says that “God gave wells157 also to the righteous.” Now he did not observe that the righteous do not construct cisterns,158 but dig wells, seeking to discover the inherent ground and source of potable blessings,159 inasmuch as they receive in a figurative sense the commandment which enjoins, “Drink waters from your own vessels, and from your own wells of fresh water. Let not your water be poured out beyond your own fountain, but let it pass into your own streets. Let it belong to you alone, and let no alien partake with thee.” (cf. Pro_5:15-17) Scripture frequently makes use of the histories of real events, in order to present to view more important truths, which are but obscurely intimated; and of this kind are the narratives relating to the “wells,” and to the “marriages,” and to the various acts of “sexual intercourse” recorded of righteous persons, respecting which, however, it will be more seasonable to offer an explanation in the exegetical writings referring to those very passages. But that wells were constructed by righteous men in the land of the Philistines, as related in the book of Genesis, (cf. Gen_26:15) is manifest from the wonderful wells which are shown at Ascalon, and which are deserving of mention on account of their structure, so foreign and peculiar compared with that of other wells. Moreover, that both young women160 and female servants are to be understood metaphorically, is not our doctrine merely, but one which we have received from the beginning from wise men, among whom a certain one said, when exhorting his hearers to investigate the figurative meaning: “Tell me, ye that read the law, do ye not hear the law? For it is written that Abraham had two sons; the one by a bond maid, the other by a free woman. But he who was of the bond woman was born after the flesh; but he of the free woman was by promise. Which things are an allegory: for these are the two covenants; the one from the Mount Sinai, which gendereth to bondage, which is Agar.” (cf. Gal_4:21-24) And a little after, “But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all.” And any one who will take up the Epistle to the Galatians may learn how the passages relating to the “marriages,” and the intercourse with “the maid-servants,” have been allegorized; the Scripture desiring us to imitate not the literal acts of those who did these things, but (as the apostles of Jesus are accustomed to call them) the spiritual.


Chap. XLV.

And whereas Celsus ought to have recognised the love of truth displayed by the writers of sacred Scripture, who have not concealed even what is to their discredit,161 and thus been led to accept the other and more marvellous accounts as true, he has done the reverse, and has characterized the story of Lot and his daughters (without examining either its literal or its figurative meaning) as “worse than the crimes of Thyestes.” The figurative signification of that passage of history it is not necessary at present to explain, nor what is meant by Sodom, and by the words of the angels to him who was escaping thence, when they said: “Look not behind thee, neither stay thou in all the surrounding district; escape to the mountain, lest thou be consumed;” (Gen_19:17) nor what is intended by Lot and his wife, who became a pillar of salt because she turned back; nor by his daughters intoxicating their father, that they might become mothers by him. But let us in a few words soften down the repulsive features of the history. The nature of actions – good, bad, and indifferent – has been investigated by the Greeks; and the more successful of such investigators162 lay down the principle that intention alone gives to actions the character of good or bad, and that all things which are done without a purpose are, strictly speaking, indifferent; that when the intention is directed to a becoming end, it is praiseworthy; when the reverse, it is censurable. They have said, accordingly, in the section relating to” things indifferent,” that, strictly speaking, for a man to have sexual intercourse with his daughters is a thing indifferent, although such a thing ought not to take place in established communities. And for the sake of hypothesis, in order to show that such an act belongs to the class of things indifferent, they have assumed the case of a wise man being left with an only daughter, the entire human race besides having perished; and they put the question whether the father can fitly have intercourse with his daughter, in order, agreeably to the supposition, to prevent the extermination of mankind. Is this to be accounted sound reasoning among the Greeks, and to be commended by the influential163 sect of the Stoics; but when young maidens, who had heard of the burning of the world, though without comprehending (its full meaning), saw fire devastating their city and country, and supposing that the only means left of rekindling the flame164 of human life lay in their father and themselves, should, on such a supposition, conceive the desire that the world should continue, shall their conduct be deemed worse than that of the wise man who, according to the hypothesis of the Stoics, acts becomingly in having intercourse with his daughter in the case already supposed, of all men having been destroyed? I am not unaware, however, that some have taken offence at the desire165 of Lot’s daughters, and have regarded their conduct as very wicked; and have said that two accursed nations – Moab and Ammon – have sprung from that unhallowed intercourse. And yet truly sacred Scripture is nowhere found distinctly approving of their conduct as good, nor yet passing sentence upon it as blameworthy. Nevertheless, whatever be the real state of the case, it admits not only of a figurative meaning, but also of being defended on its own merits.166


Chap. XLVI.

Celsus, moreover, sneers at the “hatred” of Esau (to which, I suppose, he refers) against Jacob, although he was a man who, according to the Scriptures, is acknowledged to have been wicked; and not clearly stating the story of Simeon and Levi, who sallied out (on the Shechemites) on account of the insult offered to their sister, who had been violated by the son of the Shechemite king, he inveighs against their conduct. And passing on, he speaks of” brothers selling (one another),” alluding to the sons of Jacob; and of “a brother sold,” Joseph to wit; and of “a father deceived,” viz., Jacob, because he entertained no suspicion of his sons when they showed him Joseph’s coat of many colours, but believed their statement, and mourned for his son, who was a slave in Egypt, as if he were dead. And observe in what a spirit of hatred and falsehood Celsus collects together the statements of the sacred history; so that wherever it appeared to him to contain a ground of accusation he produces the passage, but wherever there is any exhibition of virtue worthy of mention – as when Joseph would not gratify the lust of his mistress, refusing alike her allurements and her threats – he does not even mention the circumstance! He should see, indeed, that the conduct of Joseph was far superior to what is related of Bellerophon,167 since the former chose rather to be shut up in prison than do violence to his virtue. For although he might have offered a just defence against his accuser, he magnanimously remained silent, entrusting his cause to God.


Chap. XLVII.

Celsus next, for form’s sake,168 and with great want of precision, speaks of “the dreams of the chief butler and chief baker, and of Pharaoh, and of the explanation of them, in consequence of which Joseph was taken out of prison in order to be entrusted by Pharaoh with the second place in Egypt.” What absurdity, then, did the history contain, looked at even in itself, that it should be adduced as matter of accusation by this Celsus, who gave the title of True Discourse to a treatise not containing doctrines, but full of charges against Jews and Christians? He adds: “He who had been sold behaved kindly to his brethren (who had sold him), when they were suffering from hunger, and had been sent with their asses to purchase (provisions);” although he has not related these occurrences (in his treatise). But he does mention the circumstance of Joseph making himself known to his brethren, although I know not with what view, or what absurdity he can point out in such an occurrence; since it is impossible for Momus himself, we might say, to find any reasonable fault with events which, apart from their figurative meaning, present so much that is attractive. He relates, further, that “Joseph, who had been sold as a slave, was restored to liberty, and went up with a solemn procession to his father’s funeral,” and thinks that the narrative furnishes matter of accusation against us, as he makes the following remark: “By whom (Joseph, namely) the illustrious and divine nation of the Jews, after growing up in Egypt to be a multitude of people, was commanded to sojourn somewhere beyond the limits of the kingdom, and to pasture their flocks in districts of no repute.” Now the words, “that they were commanded to pasture their flocks in districts of no repute,” are an addition, proceeding from his own feelings of hatred; for he has not shown that Goshen, the district of Egypt, is a place of no repute. The exodus of the people from Egypt he calls a flight, not at all remembering what is written in the book of Exodus regarding the departure of the Hebrews from the land of Egypt. We have enumerated these instances to show that what, literally considered, might appear to furnish ground of accusation, Celsus has not succeeded in proving to be either objectionable or foolish, having utterly failed to establish the evil character, as he regards it, of our Scriptures.





85 βδελύσσεται.

86 τιμιώτερα.

87 δαιμόνια. cf. Psa_96:5.

88 καὶ τοῦτό γ ἂν ἐρμηνεύοιμι, τὀ “ἡμεῖς” λέγων ἀντὶ τοῦ οἱ λογικοὶ, καὶ ἔτι μᾶλλον, οἱ σπουδαῖοι λογικοί.

89 ὥστε καὶ ἡ αὐτῂ ἀρετὴ ἀνθρώπου καὶ Θεοῦ. cf. Cicero, de Leg., i.: “Jam vero virtus eadem in homine ac deo est, neque ullo alio in genio praeterea. Est autem virtus nihil aliud, quam in se perfecta, et ad summum perducta natura. Est igitur homini cum Deo similitudo.” cf. also Clemens Alex., Strom., vii. c. 14: Οὐ γὰρ, καθάπερ οἱ Στωΐκοὶ, ἀθέως, πάνυ τὴν αὐτὴν ἀρετὴν ἀνθρώπου λέγομεν καὶ Θεοῦ. cf. Theodoret, Serm., xi. – Spencer.

90 cf. Eurip., Phoeniss, 546, 547.

91 βωμολόχος.

92 καὶ ἀμείβουσι σώματα.

93 οὔτ ἐν λόγῳ οὔτ ἐν ἀριθμῷ αὐτούς ποτε γεγενημένους.

94 ἐπολιτεύετο.

95 [See book iii. cap. lxxvi., and to vol. 3. p. 76, this series.]

96 πολιτεία.

97 οὐδὲ φαίνεσθαι θηλυδρίαν οἷόν τ ἦν.

98 οἵ τινες διὰ τὸ καθαρὸν ἦθος, καὶ τὸ ὑπὲρ ἄνθρωπον.

99 θείᾳ μοίρᾳ.

100 καίτοιγε πάντα κάλων κινήσαντες.

101 ἀπὸ πρώτης σπορᾶς γοήτων καὶ πλάνων ἀνθρώπων.

102 παρεξηγούμενοι.

103 [This formula he regards as an adumbration of the Triad (see our vol. 2. p. 101): thus, “the God of Abraham” = Fatherhood; “of Isaac” = Sonship; “of Jacob” = Wisdom, and the Founder of the New Israel.]

104 εῖτε καὶ αὐτόθεν σεμνύνουσαν ἐν ἀποῤῥήτοις τοὺς ἄνδρας, εἴτε καὶ δι ὑπονοιῶν αἰνισσομένην τινὰ μεγάλα καὶ θαυμάσια τοῖς θεωρῆσαι αὐτὰ δυναμένοις;

105 μυστικῆς ἀναγραφῆς.

106 ὲροῦμέν τε· ὅτι μήποτε τὸ καὶ ὑφ ὑμῶν παραλαμβάνεσθαι τὰ ὀνόματα τῶν τριῶν τούτων γεναρχῶν τοῦ ἔθνους, τῇ ἐναργείᾳ καταλαμβανόντων, οὐκ εὐκαταφρόντα ἀνύεσθαι ἐκ τῆς κατεπικλήσεως αὐτῶν, παρίστησι τὸ θεῖον τῶν ἀνδρῶν; Guietus would expunge the words τῇ ἐναργείᾳ καταλαμβαιόντων.

107 [See note 103, on the formula of benediction and exorcism, and compare Num_6:24]

108 κατὰ δὲ Κέλσον, οὐ παριστάντα. Libri editi ad oram ὡς παριστάντα.

109 γενναίως.

110 παρεξηγούμενοι.

111 παρέῤῥιψε.

112 συγκύψαντες.

113 ἀμουσότατα.

114 cf. Plato, de Repub., book ii. etc.

115 ἐπὶ τῆς πλάσεως.

116 σχῆμα.

117 κακοήθειαν.

118 πλάσεως.

119 Gen_2:7; Hebrew בְּאַפָּין, LXX. πρόσωπον.

120 ἐμφυσώμενον.

121 ἀντὶ τοῦ πυρός.

122 χωρὶς παντὸς λόγου καὶ τινος ἐπικρύψεως.

123 μοχθίζειν.

124 Hesiod, Works and Days , i. 73-114 (Elton’s translation [in substance. S.]).

125 Hesiod, Works and Days, i. 125-134 (Elton’s translation [in substance. S.]).

126 “μῦθόν τινα” παραπλήσιον τοῖς παραδιδομένοις ταῖς γραυσίν.

127 παράδεισος.

128 Penia, poverty; Porus, abundance.

129 διὰ τὴν αὑτῆς ἀπορίαν.

130 ἐν τοῖς ἐκείνης γενεθλίοις.

131 ἐν τοιαῦτῃ τύχῃ καθέστηκε.

132 σκληρὸς καὶ αὐχμηρός.

133 ἐνδείᾳ.

134 σύντονος.

135 δεινός.

136 καὶ φρονήσεως ἐπιθυμητὴς καὶ πόριμος.

137 δεινὸς γόης.

138 [Plato, Symposion, xxiii. p. 203. S.]

14Boherellus, quem Ruaeus sequitur, in notis; “Ante voces: τίνα τρόπον,videtur deesse: θαυμάσονται, aut quid simile.” – Lommatzsch.

140 τὸ λεγόμενον.

141 εὐκαταφρονήτων.

142 φυσιολογεῖ Μωΰσῆς τὰ περὶ τῆς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου φύσεως.

143 οὐκ ἔστι καθ ἧς οὐ λέγεται.

144 πτεροῤῥυούσης. This is a correction for πτεροφυούσης, the textual reading in the Benedictine and Spencer’s edd.

145 ἀλλόκοτον.

146 κορώνη.

147 παραχαράττοντες καὶ ῥᾳδιουργοῦντες.

148 τῶ δυνάμει λέγεσθαι τὰ μέτρα.

149 [ This question, which is little short of astounding, illustrates the marvellous reach and play of Origen’s fancy at times. See de Princip., bk. i, chap. vi., note 45]

150 παραχαράττοντες καὶ ῥᾳδιουργοῦντες.

151 ἔξωρον.

152 ἄγχιστα δὲ τοῦτοις πᾶσι συμπολιτεύομενον.

153 θειότητα.

154 ἐῤῥωμένως.

155 cf. Gen_30:42 (LXX.). “The feebler were Laban’s, and the stronger Jacob’s ” (Auth. Vers.).

156 παρ οἷς τὰ ποικίλα ἤθη ἐπίσημα γενόμενα, τῷ λογῷ τοῦ Θεοῦ πολιτεύεται, δοθέντα κτῆσις τῷ τροπικῶς καλουμένῳ Ἰακώβ: ἐπίσημα is the term employed to denote the “spotted” cattle of Laban, and is here used by Origen in its figurative sense of “distinguished,” thus playing on the double meaning of the word.

157 φρέατα.

158 λάκκους.

159 τὴν ἐνυπάρχουσαν γῆν καὶ ἀρχὴν τῶν ποτίμων ἀγαθῶν. Boherellus proposes: τὴν ἐνυπάρχουσαν πηγὴν καὶ ἀρχὴν τῶν ποτίμων ὑδάτων.

160 νυμφας.

161 τὰ ἀπεμφαίνοντα.

162 οἱ ἐπιτυγχάνοντές γε αὐτῶν.

163 οὐκ εὐκαταφρόνητος αὐτοῖς.

164 ζώπυρον.

165 βουλήματι.

166 ἔχει δέ τινα καὶ καθ αὑτὸ άπολογίαν. [Our Edinburgh translator gives a misleading rendering here. Origen throughout this part of his argument is reasoning ad hominem, and has shown that Greek philosophy sustains this idea.]

167 cf. Homer, Iliad, vi. 160.

168 ὁσίας ἕνεκεν.